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Chicago Sun-Times

By Bruce Ingram
Everything chugs along briskly and reasonably entertainingly until running off the rails a bit with a wildly overcomplicated finale.
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Slant Magazine

By R. Kurt Osenlund
The movie? blasts by for a while as an odd and busy slice of highly watchable garbage.
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Miami Herald

By Rene Rodriguez
Start with a heaping helping of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer." Throw in some "Percy Jackson," a dash of "Twilight," a spoonful of "The Vampire Diaries" and a sprinkling of "Harry Potter," and you end up with The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones.
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By Mark Jenkins
Aside from the giggles induced by the romance-novel bits, the movie's principal hazard is exhaustion. There are too many characters, and too many of them spend too much time morphing into something else. Five more like this? That would be demonic.
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Philadelphia Inquirer

By David Hiltbrand
Though imaginatively directed by Harald Zwart, Mortal Instruments, which is adapted from Cassandra Clare's YA novels, is marred by significant flaws.
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By James Berardinelli
The storyline is at times muddled and incoherent. This won't bother readers much since they have the "inside track" on what's happening. Then again, the narrative is so predictable that maybe it doesn't matter.
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Movie Nation

By Roger Moore
If you love exposition and shapely if bland young actors in leather, skinny jeans, knee boots, Goth cocktail dresses and heavy eye makeup, this may be the movie for you.
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The New York Times

By Jeannette Catsoulis
Too much of the film feels like shorthand, a trail of teasing crumbs to lead us to the inevitable sequels.
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USA Today

By Scott Bowles
Though it has flashes of promise, Bones traces the footsteps of its fantasy film predecessors too closely to blaze anything close to an original narrative.
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Village Voice

The nomenclature varies slightly, but there's little new or exciting in City of Bones. For strong female role models and unique fantasy settings, stick with The Hunger Games.
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33 out of 100
Generally unfavorable reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.